Romano Romanelli was the son of the famous sculptor Raffaello Romanelli (1856-1928). His grandfather Pasquale (1812-87) was also a sculptor. After World War II, Romano became known for the creation of the Friezes in South Africa for the Voortrekker Monument, which he did with local artists. Raffaello, one of his sons, also became a sculptor.
Romano Romanelli created both large scale works and smaller statues. As a navigator he traveled around the world with the Italian Navy (he studied at the Navy School), visiting the Mediterranean, North America, and Europe including the Azores and Madeira. He served for three years in the Far East, including China, Japan, Siberia, the Dutch and British East Indies, the Indian Ocean, and the Red Sea.